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Release of energy master plan delayed

Charting the state's energy future is proving to be more difficult than anticipated. The Corzine administration is delaying the release of the first energy master plan in more than a decade because of an intensifying debate over whether New Jersey needs additional power plants to address surging demand for electricity. ...Some members of the business community are concerned the state will rely too heavily on conser vation and alternative energy sources to address rising demand for power. "If we don't deal with the supply issues, then the prices are going to go up," said Hal Bozarth, executive director of the Chemistry Council of New Jersey.

Charting the state's energy future is proving to be more difficult than anticipated.

The Corzine administration is delaying the release of the first energy master plan in more than a decade because of an intensifying debate over whether New Jersey needs additional power plants to address surging demand for electricity.

The draft master plan, the product of a yearlong effort to revamp the state's energy policies, is ex pected to call for dramatic reductions in how much energy businesses and residents use each year, while promoting alternative fuels such as solar and wind power.

It was supposed to be released this past November, but has been held up because key parts of it have drawn fire from environmentalists, particularly a proposal to create a state authority to develop new power plants.

The plan also anticipates all four of the nuclear power plants in the state -- including Oyster Creek, the nation's oldest commercial station -- will continue to operate and the state will need to develop up to two additional major power plants to meet its growing energy needs.

Those assumptions rankle environmentalists, who argue the state should be more aggressive in... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Charting the state's energy future is proving to be more difficult than anticipated.

The Corzine administration is delaying the release of the first energy master plan in more than a decade because of an intensifying debate over whether New Jersey needs additional power plants to address surging demand for electricity.

The draft master plan, the product of a yearlong effort to revamp the state's energy policies, is ex pected to call for dramatic reductions in how much energy businesses and residents use each year, while promoting alternative fuels such as solar and wind power.

It was supposed to be released this past November, but has been held up because key parts of it have drawn fire from environmentalists, particularly a proposal to create a state authority to develop new power plants.

The plan also anticipates all four of the nuclear power plants in the state -- including Oyster Creek, the nation's oldest commercial station -- will continue to operate and the state will need to develop up to two additional major power plants to meet its growing energy needs.

Those assumptions rankle environmentalists, who argue the state should be more aggressive in promoting conservation and renewable energy sources instead of building coal-fired or nuclear power plants. Public Service Enterprise Group, a Newark company that operates the state's largest utility, is considering adding another unit to its three nuclear power plants in South Jersey.

"Nuclear and coal are not really viable options," said Dena Mottola Jaborska of Environment New Jersey. "None of them will fit the bill, because either it is too expensive or it will take too long to build."

Jeff Tittel of the Sierra Club of New Jersey said the state should explore alternative means of producing electricity, such as developing off-shore wind power, instead of building conventional power plants.

"We're heading into a new age for energy production," Tittel said. "The energy master plan was looking backward, not forward."

Corzine administration officials declined to say specifically why the master plan is being delayed or for how long, although those who have been briefed by the governor's office say they have been told it will be at least 60 days.

"Gov. Corzine has made clear that rational energy planning and controlling greenhouse gas emissions are among his top priorities, and that hasn't changed," said Lilo Stainton, his spokeswoman. "Be cause of the complex and technical nature of the energy master plan process, there are a number of issues that require further independent confirmation and analysis."

Some members of the business community are concerned the state will rely too heavily on conser vation and alternative energy sources to address rising demand for power.

"If we don't deal with the supply issues, then the prices are going to go up," said Hal Bozarth, executive director of the Chemistry Council of New Jersey.


Source: http://www.nj.com/business/...

JAN 4 2008
https://www.windaction.org/posts/12618-release-of-energy-master-plan-delayed
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